Monday, February 21, 2011

Montana

 In 2006 we were hired to do a NHL  players home out in Montana.  Better get a cup of tea or coffee because this one could take a while.  Uwe had bought the home when he was into dog sledding...you know like the Iditarod.  It is 90 miles outside of Missoula, in Seeley Lake and had never been furnished except for a few beds and a couple of couches.  It was 7800 square feet and it was a log cabin.  There was also NO  central heat and air.  Yes.... you read that right.  It had heated floors but people it gets 40 below out in those parts.  For real.

He wanted to furnish it to sell so we flew out for the preview and see what we were up against.  Missoula.  Far far away.  I have never been to Montana.  Let me tell you something about those parts.  They wear sensible clothes.  No Jimmy Choos.  If they are wearing a scarf it is to keep them warm...not to make your outfit look cute.  In fact, I bet NO ONE uses the word cute out there.

I don't have a ton of pictures because my laptop crashed a few years ago and I lost dang everything.  I now have Time Machine.  You only make that mistake once.

It had 5 bedrooms.  There was a young couple who lived there to take care of the property.  [90 acres] We did have use of a truck.  Lets just start with the driveway.  4 miles long.....not paved.....no lights.  Do you know how dark it is out in the middle of no where?  Really dark.  Pitch black.  More on that later.

Lets start with a picture of this log cabin.

This is a view of the back...it is all I have.  If there are some readers from Missoula, then I apologize if it appears that I didn't like it there.....I mean towards the end of the job I was calling it "Miseryoola".  Cause they DO NOT have very good shopping.  It might be better now but this was 5 years ago.  I had to buy most of the stuff in Atlanta and have it moved out there.  Especially accessories.  I secured a storage unit and went to Scott's and shopped like a maniac! We started it in about June and finished in October with just three trips out there.

Here is a picture of the master bedroom.  A lot of yellow wood.  Everywhere...log cabin remember.  We had to get that bed out of there.  Can you even see the bed????




We actually found the bedroom set  in a furniture store out there.  All rugs were bought in Atlanta and shipped.  We had to get this done pretty fast so they could put it in the market,  we did not have a lot of time to waste.  Literally when we would get there we would work from the minute we got up to bedtime.  No TV.  There wasn't one.  It was hot as the dickens in the summer so we had to sleep with the windows open.  Can I tell you how scared I was when I heard wolfs howling???  There were mountain lions up there so they had to keep the dogs close to the house. You could not go out at night and  one evening a dog [there were 2 house dogs]  brought a deer leg to the front door [that a mountain lion had killed].  How sweet...a present.  You try to sleep.......


Here is the sitting area in the bedroom.



This is a picture of the family room before.  We managed to use the 2 leather sofas elsewhere in a bedroom and one downstairs.  We did not find a place for the chair.  Too bad huh?

Here is after.  Remember Storehouse?  There was an outlet store right down from my house.  Lord I miss that place.  I got all the furniture there.  Had the chair and couch recovered.  The coffee table, red chest lamps and accessories were from Scott's.
We also had to find someone to do all the window treatments, in a town of 1500 people.  That was hard. Let's put it in perspective here....Atlanta..... population 2 million.  Missoula...population 57,000.  That was the hardest part of the job, finding painters, electricians and plumbers.
I wish I had more pictures.  We had to do 5 bedrooms, a theatre room, gym, outdoor furniture, kitchen, and foyer.  It was pretty overwhelming at times.  Yes...we did have TV's put in.  But they were not working while we were there.
Another angle of the den.


There was a whole suite downstairs, another bedroom, gym, laundry room, and theatre room.  We also had to get a small kitchen put in.
This was one of the bedrooms downstairs.
Here is the after.
This was a hallway.  We took those benches from somewhere else, painted them and put them together.  I still can't believe they fit.



Here is the kitchen.  I don't have a before but this is the original table which we sanded and re-stained.  Ourselves.  New chairs...new lighting.
This was the den downstairs off that bedroom and the hallway.  Don't you like how I am all over the place with the order of the pictures?  That is how my life is also.....
Here is one of the leather sofas we reused.

I will never forget the few days before we scheduled the moving van to come to the storage unit.  Getting last minute things and it was July in ATL.  HOT as HELL....I was sweating like a Miami hooker.  The thing is you could not count on finding anything in Miseryoola.  No Homegoods....no Bed bath and Beyond...nothing.  JC Penney and maybe a Sears I think.

Sometimes we would leave the ranch and head into town [90 miles]  drive around and shop all day and then head home.  We really did not want to be driving up that dirt 4 mile driveway after dark.  I am telling you it was scary.  This is where there are bears, lions, and all kinds of animals that I have only seen in ZOO's.  I think the first night we did it....we were halfway up just shaking with fright and I slammed on the breaks and screamed....just to scare Denise.  I think she messed herself :).  You had to go like 0 miles an hour because it was so bumpy and there were also some turns in the road marked only by a broken branch or something.   After the first wrong turn I can tell you that we started paying VERY good attention.   There were NO neighbors.

As hard as it was there were some fun times out there.  When it was cold we had to wear gloves inside the house to work.  And we were only there in October...I can not imagine winter.  Only radiant heating...remember?

So don't forget about the swell giveaway.


I am going to pick a winner on Thursday.

Have a great week.

Pin It!

36 comments:

maggie said...

omg! just got off the floor laughing...because i know YOU and could only imagine you sleeping with the window's open!! NOT! and scaring denise..that is so you!!! great pictures..wonderful story! miseryoula..hahah!

lizziefitz said...

Oh my! We are going to Montana this summer ( for the first time) ! Speechless.

Lisa Mowry said...

Sherry,
I would watch a reality show for years on end if it was about your adventures in Montana...so funny.
They are definitely no-nonsense out in that part of the country! You did a great job, though...really comfortable and chic with just the right amount of rustic.

A Delightful Design said...

You should change your name to Sherry the-miracle-worker Hart! This was amazing and you earned every penny of whatever they paid you. I hope it was a billion dollars. :-)

I love how you weave story telling into your design posts. xo,abby

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

The rooms you designed are gorgeous and comfortable looking. I can't believe the conditions you worked in. I like that you spelled bears wrong and have beers. You probably could have used some beers. I loved Store House. My old table and chairs that I had in the breakfast room were from Store House. Very well made. Bought them in the eighties and still have them. They are stored in the bonus room. Solid maple topped farmhouse style table that is heavy as lead and six rush seat chairs made in Italy. Still in perfect condition except I painted them black a few years ago. They were a teal color.

Cathy said...

A new style is born "Sophisticated Cabin!" Great transformation, an excellent story full of your wry humor, a good way to start a Monday in cold snowy Wisconsin!

Cathy

Cindy R said...

Wonderful story, sherry! Hilarious, as always!
I love your story-telling.
Incredible transformation! Great work...agree with previous post...hope you got lots of $$$ for that job!
Curious, Did he sell?

Anonymous said...

I can't believe you didn't buy that stuffed mountain lion at Scott's for this cabin!

Great transformation.

Maureen in Decatur

Cassie @ Primitive & Proper said...

oh my gosh! i want that log cabin- it is stunning! love that long gray church pew- that is my fave piece!

Aubrey {All Things Bright and Beautiful} said...

I am in love. It's so gorgeous! And I know you didn't totally enjoy the experience (maybe a bit of an understatement?? (c: ) of being there, but it sounds so fun! I *love* that dining room, it's quite possibly my favorite part of the whole shebang...or the benches in the hallway...A-MAZING! Have a great week!

Tammy@InStitches said...

You really made that cabin look beautiful, love it !

Joyce said...

After adding your beautiful touches, did the owners decide to keep it? You did a fab job!
EEKS I would have scared out of my pants- just visualizing gives me the chills.
How fun would it be to write a design book- telling behind the scenes and your clients?! xo

eclecticrevisited said...

I am laughing so hard...up in Michigan we have a lot of deer, coyotes, a few bears and wolves... nothing new to me... I was a little scared when the dog was going after a porcupine, though ...luckily, it was a baby one and too scared to shoot needles at the dog...
so on to your designs...you didn't have much to work with but the finished designs look very warm and comfortable...I'd move in...I like lodge...and by adding a lot more fabrics and different textures it tones down all that wood...creative, inventive and fabulous...
maureen

Carol@TheDesignPages said...

Wow, that sounds like an awful experience. So I gather you don't ever want to live in a remote, small town??? The rooms you designed are fabulous! Well done.

Mrs. French said...

yikes, looks gorgeous though. perfect for a cabin.

Alison @ The Polohouse said...

Omg. Your comments are hilarious!
Despite the hardships your design project
had to endure, the end result is fantastic!
Your clients must have been thrilled.
I realize once again how much I NEED to get
to Scott's!
Thanks for sharing.
Love it!

Rene said...

You crack me up - a deer leg? Sounds like quite an adventure and your poor friend. I do remember the Storehouse - had forgotten until now. That used to be a good store back in the day. Everything looks nice and Montana-ie. Happy anniversary!

-Rene

Blayne Beacham said...

Wow! what a job! the end product is amazing, but what an experience. It seems like the thing that when propositioned seems like a great idea, but then when you get there you think "what did I sign up for?" If I had woken up to a deer leg on the front porch i would have freaked out!! augghhh! I'm so glad you found these images.

Nancy said...

Girl, my husband and I laughed out loud as I was reading this to him and sharing the photos. One of our dreams is to visit, not live, in Montana. Thank you for the heads up!

Heather @ Satisfying Spaces said...

Wow! What an adventure. Looks like you did a fantastic job!

troy.limm said...

Montana winters can be harsh, but they are so beautiful you wouldn't mind the snow. This house looks great, and so warm! Well designed indeed. There are some great log homes for sale in montana for those interested.

Debby said...

Sounds like it was such a challenge but I love all of your work... seems so cozy! xo

Debbie@Vintage Scout Interiors said...

Loved your commentary about the whole experience and it turned out great. My favorite part however, is the half drank martini on the coffee table in the "before" picture of the living room. I imagine you really needing it. Job well done!

Mona Thompson Providence Ltd. said...

Great job! I really love that you broke up all of that leather furniture but were still able to use it so I'm sure it made them very happy. Just really like everything that you did and can appreciate how hard you worked down to sanding the dining room table yourself. That sounds like me and Sister. Just whatever it takes to get it done. I really love your commentary. I think we could be good friends.

mimi said...

Well?? Did it sell?? Love the transformation Sher.

A Vintage Vine said...

Sherry, what an adventure! You did a bang up job on that house....you softened all the wood with the furnishings and made it so appealing!!! Bet that sold fast thanks to you....Thanks for sharing!!

john said...

Well done!It's wonderful pictures in to the blog post.I like to all of it.
-----
Palliser

EZ said...

Sherry,

You are too funny! The house looks beautiful!!

Capella Kincheloe Interior Design said...

Growing up in Wyoming, there is something magical about that part of the country. But I would not want to live there full time. My cousin keeps bear shots because his grill has been eaten twice.

Gretchen O. said...

Now that is one for the "Adventures of an Interior Designer"! Sounds like fun...I have always wanted to go to Montana. And the AFTERS are amazing...hope they sold the house.

Heidiopia said...

Great transformation, Sherry! I do sooooo miss Storehouse. I have several pieces from there that have withstood the test of time beautifully.

Kellie Collis said...

What a lovely house! I'm loving the rustic feel! Enjoy the wonderful day, Kellie xx

Weebee said...

Looking at the before and afters... It's hard to redecorate yellow log everywhere cabin. Kudos to you for living out in the middle of nowhere and getting it done right!

Kristin @ My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia said...

WOW the house is just fabulous!!!!
XO

Jennifer said...

LMAO. I loved your commentary! We live in a rural area in northern Alberta so I could definetly relate to all of your "miseries". LOL
Deer leg on porch - yup!
Howling creatures at night - yup!
No decent shopping - yup!
Well, we have a WalMart - does that count? ha ha
You have shown that it's possible to make do with what you have and it can still be beautiful. Great job! :)

Lissa @ After Adornment said...

Hahaha...great story. This house looks amazing and you transformed it into such a cozy place. It must have been an awesome project, scary lions and all.